When looking for the Best Canned Dog Food we also have other considerations, such as should we only stick with one style of Dog Food or give our dog a bit of variety.
Q. Is Canned Dog Food better than Dry?
A. There are a number of advantages that "Wet" has over "Dry" in both the manufacturing process and in ingredients. As with your selection for any food option, for your dog, the ingredients list is paramount!
In case you have not seen my section on Ingredients you can use the following link (opens new window)which will help you determine how to pick a Best Canned Dog Food
Perhaps your dog will enjoy some of each on the feeding plate, or bowl, but ensure that you do not switch between 100% dry one day to 100% wet the next, as this will upset your dogs' digestive system.
An important point about changing your dog’s food.
Diet changes must be done gradually to avoid discomfort to your dog.
When you change either the quality, or style, of your dog’s food you need to do so over a number of days to allow the dog’s system to adapt.
Your dogs' large intestine bacteria becomes accustomed to a certain level of PH within the intestine and any abrupt diet change will trigger a reaction from that bacteria to the intestinal lining to release water, and bring the PH back into the previous balance.
This results in your dog having stomach ache plus diarrhea, or extremely loose stools, and a reluctance to eat.
I would suggest the following 7 day example as a minimum changeover plan, because if you can do it over a longer period it is even better.
DAY (1) Add 10% of new food with 90% old style / quality. DAY (2) Put 15% new with 85% old. On DAY(3) it is 25% new and 75% old then on DAY(4) new becomes 40% and old is 60%. Follow this on DAY(5) with 60% new and 40% old and DAY(6) will become 80% new with 20% old and on DAY(7) the switch is complete with 100% new food.
If you are adding canned food as part of a mixed food plate then you only need to go to the day to suit the percentage of the inclusion.
Canned Dog Food advantages.
Moisture is maintained by using the wet manufacturing process, and this can be anything from barely moist, right through to a gravy mix. This, it is said, means a better retention of the foods' natural flavors.
Also the "cooking" of the food, within the tin, offers better sterility and longevity, advocates of the production process say.
Less preservatives (if any) are present, and much the same goes for fillers, although that is not to say that some of the lower quality products do not use cheap ingredients as fillers!
In recent times we have seen the introduction by some manufacturers of "fresh" ingredients such as whole chicken wings or thighs or even a whole fish! Apparently when the tin is "cooked' the bones become so soft that there are no problems for the dogs.
Does including these "fresh" ingredients qualify them as being the Best Canned Dog Food available? Not really - it just gives them a "point of difference" in the market place.
These inclusions probably mean that some form of hand packing has to take place, which would usually attract a higher price tag as people are slower than processing / packing equipment!
It was suggested to me, by a vet, that feeding a 50/50 mix of canned dog food, with a dry variety, was fine, although when I was doing my best canned dog food reviews I found most manufacturers websites these days seem to recommend that only 25-30% of the food should be wet.
Certainly feeding only wet food is discouraged by many, but this seems to be qualified by saying dogs need kibble to "clean" their teeth.
Opponents to that line of thinking say a dog breaks the dry food on the top of the teeth only, and kibble should not be considered as a teeth cleaner for dogs.
Once the can is opened any unused portion of canned dog food should be refrigerated.
Likewise any food left by your dog should also be refrigerated.
Food should not be left on the plate or bowl for your dog to have later, as it will "spoil" reasonably quickly, and your dog should not consume it.
Ideally you should be feeding the right balance of portions, which should see all of the food eaten by the dog.
When introducing your dog to your best canned dog food choice you really need to do it on a gradual basis over several days.
Most dogs seem to tuck into wet food with glee!
Although wet food has moisture your dog should still have access to fresh water.
** CAUTION! **
If you are comparing Guaranteed Analysis Tables it is not possible to directly compare canned dog food and dry dog foods, because you would need to convert the canned ingredients to a "without water basis" of each of the ingredients.
There is a recognized mathematical formula for doing so, but I like a suggested "ball park" method, on the website of the US Food and Drug Administration, that I saw, which said;
"The amount of dry matter in the dry food is about four times the amount in a canned product. To compare guarantees between a dry and canned food multiply the guarantees for the canned food times four first"
That's nice and simple and close enough for me!
FOR EXAMPLE if the Guaranteed Analysis Table (GAT) for Protein on a can reads 8% (x4) it brings the Dry Matter Basis (DMB) comparison for Protein to 32%.
A Fat GAT of 7% (x4) becomes 28% DMB. 4% Fiber will become 16% and water with say a 74% reading becomes a NIL reading since our rule is taking out any water content considerations, for the purposes of comparing canned dog food with kibble.
This simple method of multiplying by 4 rule will give you a rough enough guide to help in your comparisons.
I am sure your dog will enjoy many of the products available but once again you need to read the ingredients, buy the Best Canned Dog Food available to you ensuring you are not only getting value for money, but that you are getting a quality product.
Us dog owners have to be very conscious that the buyer beware rule applies when buying dog foods!
Following below are links to some of the best canned dog food that I found and I am comfortable with, and ones you may wish to consider, plus my comments on each.
There were a couple of others but I discovered the manufacture was outsourced to MENU FOODS, which immediately eliminated them from my consideration.